Singaporeans Must Respect LGBT Rights But Not Let Differing Views Divide Us

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The annual Pink Dot took place at Hong Lim Park on 29 Jun 2019. Some observers noted that attendees were angrier this time, probably due to the nature of the theme (“standing against discrimination”) as well as PM Lee’s recent comment.

Many were triggered by Lee Hsien Loong for saying that 377A is here to stay. He explained that it has not “inhibited people from living” or stopped Pink Dot from having a gathering every year.

Supporters naturally took offense and rallied for the repeal of 377A. While it is important to condemn all kinds of discrimination, Singaporeans must not let a difference in views make the country too divided.

People have to recognize that everyone is entitled to their opinion. If you support the repeal, fine. If you are against it, that is up to you. It is pointless to split the population into two camps and shout over each other’s heads.

At the end of the day, Singaporeans want the best for our country; we want progress. If we cannot respect and live with our differences, we will never move forward together.

To the LGBTs in Singapore, you are definitely not invisible. In fact, you are going places and making yourselves heard. It may be hard to fight stereotypes. It may seem like a long, uphill climb, but there are groups here that will speak up for and protect LGBT rights.

Furthermore, Pink Dot itself is iconic for celebrating diversity and proving a point. Many non-LGBT individuals continue to attend it and lend support to its cause.

Compared to the past, society has undeniably evolved. Whether we have progressed enough is subjective and unfortunately, change will take time. As long as Singaporeans respect that and remain united in our identity, the wait could well be worthwhile.

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